Ironic as it may sound, commercial e-mailers are jubilant about a new feature Microsoft's rolling out: an "unsubscribe" button.Not sure what I think about this. Microsoft claims to be protecting against listwashing, as only "legitimate" senders get the unsubscribe button. Then again, do we trust Microsoft's view of who's legitimate?
The button is part of Windows Live, the beta service that will replace Hotmail in a few months. If it's as successful as many anticipate, expect similar changes at the other major ISPs.
Here's how it works: Windows Live account holders have begun to see the "unsubscribe" button replace the dreaded "report spam" button on messages that contain a valid unsubscribe link. When a person clicks the "unsubscribe" button, Microsoft forwards the request to the sender.
Note that if MS thinks the sender is legit., you don't get to see a Report Spam button.